Volunteer Wisconsin History: Building resilient communities through volunteers
Volunteer Wisconsin was first funded in 2011 by the Volunteer Generation Fund Grant. Since then, Volunteer Wisconsin has been fulfilling its mission of connecting volunteers to nonprofits throughout the state, via its website, www.VolunteerWisconsin.org. For the first two years, Volunteer Wisconsin was managed by the Nonprofit Center of Milwaukee. In 2014, Marshfield Clinic began managing Volunteer Wisconsin, supported by the Corporation for National and Community Service through Serve Wisconsin.
From 2012 – 2014, Volunteer Wisconsin facilitated and participated in 14 volunteer engagement training workshops around the state, hosted seven community meetings with volunteer centers and nonprofits and offered 32 mini-grants for national days of service projects. Volunteer Wisconsin also worked with volunteer centers to release the first Volunteer Center Impact Report in 2012, a report released annually in 2015.
Marshfield Clinic AmeriCorps Volunteer Wisconsin program was launched in October 2014. Annually, this program provided training to 45 national service members to serve as volunteer coordinators at nonprofits around the state, including Volunteer Wisconsin. Since 2014, Volunteer Wisconsin has been supported by the efforts of a full-time Marshfield Clinic AmeriCorps Volunteer Wisconsin member. Over the past four terms, Volunteer Wisconsin AmeriCorps members have been placed at sites from Douglas to Milwaukee counties north to south, and from Brown to eau Claire counties east and west.
In 2015, Volunteer Wisconsin initiated the Volunteer Rock Star program to regularly recognize volunteers throughout Wisconsin. Since the program’s creation, more the 50 volunteers from 23 counties across the state have been recognized as Volunteer Rock Stars.
Affiliation with the Wisconsin Volunteer Coordinators Association (WVCA) strengthened when the Volunteer Center Association of Wisconsin disbanded in 2015. Volunteer Wisconsin staff has presented at the annual WVCA conference twice, assisted with conference planning two years and joined the WVCA Board of Directors in 2016 as Chair of the Concerns and Action Committee. In 2017, Volunteer Wisconsin became a statewide affiliate member of WVCA.
Our website, www.VolunteerWisconsin.org, has been the public face of Volunteer Wisconsin since its inception and has undergone a series of changes since 2011. Starting with the volunteer matching platform, Volunteer Solutions, we transitioned to Galaxy Digital’s Get Connected in the summer of 2016. Throughout the years and across all platforms, Volunteer Wisconsin continued to import agency information and volunteer opportunities maintained at local volunteer centers across the state to be able to offer a true one-stop-shop to browse volunteer needs in Wisconsin.
Most recently, in 2017, Volunteer Wisconsin launched a website beyond its volunteer matching platform. Through this expanded site, both volunteer managers and volunteers alike can better access available resources.
Questions? Contact Shelly Kaiser at 715-221-8406 or firstname.lastname@example.org.